Video Retrospective by Annette Barbier

Annette Barbier: Mini Retrospective of Video Works 1989-2008

video stills left to right: The Moon 1989, Cracks 2008, Stages 2007, Time 1993

“When Leo proposed a show at the fountains, my first thought was that there should be a formal correspondence between the location and the work (in particular, the circular shape of the drinking fountain bowls). Next, there should be a strong relationship between the function of the fountains (delivering water) and that of the video. Circles have always had a strong hold on my imagination, being foundational archetypal images symbolizing the self. The Vitruvian man and the Ouroboros (tail eating snake symbolizing cyclicality) were important in Stages (2007), which has a number of meanings including the stages of life (and death). The Moon (1989), an excerpt from a longer video about India (Women’s Movements) deals with the correspondence between macro and micro, celestial bodies and our own small, daily activities. Time (1993) is a reflection on the repetition of daily rituals.               Cracks (2008) juxtaposes the north pole with the beach, the sewer with the sea to collapse distance and create liminal spaces.”

– Annette Barbier


Click above to see Annette’s video work hosted on the Fountains Foundation Vimeo Page as well as the Fountain’s Mini Documentary with Annette.


Guest critic Celine Browning has written a comprehensive essay for this mini retrospective. To download a PDF of her essay click here

Celine PortraitCeline Browning is a Chicago-born artist and art writer living in Boston. Her work has been exhibited nationally, and as of 2014, internationally. Browning writes for several online publications. Her work can be seen online at In 2011, Browning earned an MFA from SUNY New Paltz.

Annette’s Bio


Barbier received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work, encompassing video, new media, and sculptural objects has received recognition in venues including the Chicago International Film Festival, Dallas Video Festival, Women in the Director’s Chair, Image Union, broadcast on WTTW Chicago, the Houston Film Festival, The Learning Channel, San Paolo Video Festival.  More recent work has been shown in new media festivals and conferences such as the International Digital Media and Art (best of show 2005, featured artist 2011), International Symposium on Electronic Art, the College Art Association, and Ars Electronica. She has received numerous grants from organizations such as the Illinois Arts Council, the Propeller Fund, Faculty Research Grants at Columbia College and Northwestern University, the NEA, and the Fulbright program. She has received awards from the University Film and Video Association, the International Digital Media and Arts Association, FILE, Houston Worldfest, the Chicago International Film Festival. Her work has been reviewed in Media-N, the Journal of the New Media Caucus, After Image, the Journal of South Asian Cinema, the New Art Examiner and the Village Voice.

Current Work:

Having worked for years in video and new media, she has begun to re-investigate the ways in which embodiment can facilitate the expression of an idea. Most recently, she calls into question our relationship to the natural world using technology as a metaphor for loss. Loss of material through the destructive process of laser engraving, which removes material through burning, as compared to loss of habitat, loss of entire species, and loss of diversity in our native plants and animals.

To view Annette’s most recent work click here

To view her flicker account click here

To see more of her video work  click here